Councillor claims badgers could be culled in car parks

Councillor Eddie Gaines Councillor Eddie Gaines says badgers could be shot in public car parks when the pilot gets underway

A Somerset councillor claims badgers could be shot in public car parks when the pilot culls get underway.

The comments were made by Councillor Eddie Gaines, an Independent on Taunton Deane Borough Council.

He and his colleagues had just been debating a motion to ban badger culling on council-owned land.

This followed a recent decision by Forest of Dean District Council to implement just such a ban.

Both councils are in areas generally earmarked for the two pilot culls.

Taunton Deane rejected the motion. And the whole exercise seemed rather academic anyway, given that the council doesn't own much in the way of farmland.

Unsurprisingly for a district council, it is big on things like housing estates - and car parks.

Our interview with Cllr Gaines (in a council car park) produced his rather surprising comments.

A Somerset councillor claims badgers could be shot in public car parks when the pilot culls get underway.

Culling guidance

Defra, however, tell me that "shooting in a car park will not be an option".

A spokesman said: "Clear guidance has been provided about the need for any culling activity to take place in a suitable location away from dwellings and urban locations, or anywhere where there is a risk of injury to people."

You can read Natural England's guidance on the Defra website.

Quite apart from the specific rules for badger culling, the criminal law has a lot to say about people who carry - let alone discharge - firearms in a public place.

Suffice to say it is not remotely encouraging and includes talk of prison sentences.

Martyn Oates Article written by Martyn Oates Martyn Oates Political editor, South West

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  • rate this

    Comment number 9.

    Totally opposed to the proposed badger cull and so are the 151,740 who have signed the stop the badger petition ( Fantastic to see this support for badgers from the British people. Makes me feel proud. Shame on those (a mean minority) who support the brutal, primitive and useless slaughter of our precious wildlife - Dark age mentality no longer serves - wake up.

  • rate this

    Comment number 8.

    This government has already clearly set out it's agenda regarding our natural environment with it's attempts to sell-off vast areas of public woodland and kill wild buzzards to protect privately-owned pheasant populations, both of which raised such public protest that they had to be cancelled. The badger cull is simply their latest policy to evoke outrage in the general public.

  • rate this

    Comment number 7.

    What a load of rubbish is being talked about badgers and their culling.What everyone chooses to ignore is that rabbits, grey squirrels, foxes and badgers all carry disease, have no natural predators and have massively increased in numbers. There is no proven vaccine available yet for cattle and vaccinating badgers does not work if they already have TB. They all look pretty but are all pests.

  • rate this

    Comment number 6.

    oldmaxim It will be people!
    This whole cull nonsense sums up every government we have had for twenty years, useless, clueless and totally misguided. They have been told by the very scientist they are quoting that it won't and can't work, as they don't know how many badgers there are, so how can they work out 70%? As it's 'bovine TB, the cattle spread it to badgers! Vaccination is the way!

  • rate this

    Comment number 5.

    So when they've cleared the areas of badgers, it will be easier for them to build on the land with no troublesome badger setts to contend with.
    I can think of no other logical reason, why they would want to dispose of s protected species this way.
    Some may call me cynical, I prefer realistic.


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